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Crowns, Bridges, Dentures, Implants

Is Tooth Lengthening A Requirement?

12/26/2011

Question:

My mom recently had a crowned tooth break off at the gum line. The roots were evaluated and found to be quite healthy and intact, so she had a root canal. A week later, her dentist installed a post and put on a temporary crown. She was told that she needs to go see an oral surgeon to have a lengthening procedure done before they can install the permanent crown. We want to know what the procedure is and why it’s needed. We thought that the crown would just be installed on the post, like an implant goes onto the aubtment. Is this procedure truly necessary? What is it’s purpose?

Answer:

Good question. The procedure they are suggesting is called "crown lengthening". This procedure uncovers more of the tooth to attach the new crown to. It is a legitimate procedure; however. one may want to weigh this option and all of the associated costs against having the tooth extracted and placing a dental implant and crown. 

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Response by:

Ed A McGlumphy, DDS, MS Ed A McGlumphy, DDS, MS
Professor of Restorative/Prosthetic Dentistry
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University